Following several years of debate, Tunisia finally has strong legislation regarding access to information. The government adopted a law to this effect in 2016, praised by many as being one of the most progressive access to information laws in the world. However, the law has faced limitations to its application, which include overzealous application of national security related exceptions.
Transparency International Defence & Security and I WATCH (Transparency International’s national chapter in Tunisia) have conducted research to understand how the access to information law is being implemented in the defence sector. We have spoken with Members of Parliament, independent commissions and civil society organisations (CSO) in Tunisia, and conducted desk research. Additionally, I WATCH has filed several access to information requests to the MOD directly, to evaluate the nature of responses received. These activities have provided the findings, and formed the basis of our conclusions and recommendations, outlined below.